On Friday 8th June, sixteen schools from across Merton competed in the Year 5/6 Best Team Kwik Cricket Finals held at Old Ruts Sports Ground. Each team had qualified from their cluster and had the opportunity to become Merton Champions and represent Merton at the Surrey Kwik Cricket Finals or at the London Youth Games.

Each school was drawn in a group based on their cluster and where they finished in their cluster events.

Pool A

Pool A consisted of Sherwood, Singlegate, Pelham and Hatfeild. The first game demonstrated how close this pool was as Pelham and Hatfeild both put on superb fielding displays. There was just six runs in it, as Hatfeild claimed victory. Pelham seemed to be the big hitters of the group scoring the most runs over their three matches. The bowling from Sherwood troubled opposing batsman and Singelgates fielding displays kept them in each match they played.

The pool finished as follows:

1st Hatfeild

2nd Pelham

3rd Sherwood

4th Singlegate

Pool B

Pool B consisted of St Matthew’s, Dundonald, Links and St Teresa’s. Outstanding batting and fielding ensured Dundonald had the best start to Pool B by overcoming Raynes Park champions St Matthew’s in the first game of the group. St Matthew’s then went on to score big in both their next fixtures to ensure they finished second in the group. Links battled in each game and only narrowly lost in their match with Dundonald. Links claimed victory over St Teresa’s in the closest game of the group.

The pool finished as follows:

1st Dundonald

2nd St Matthew’s

3rd Links

4th St Teresa’s

Pool C

Pool C consisted of Malmesbury, Stanford, Merton Park and Holy Trinity. Each team played each other once and it could not have been closer. Stanford and Malmesbury both bowled superbly in their match. It was Malmesbury who took the most wickets though to claim victory by 5 runs. Merton Park then matched this great bowling display to defeat Holy Trinity. Stanford batted excellently scoring some nice boundaries to take their score to 245 against Merton Park to win by 5 runs. Holy Trinity then came back strongly in the final match of the group to defeat Stanford. In the battle for second spot, victory for Holy Trinity meant each team had won, one fixture each, so it went down to runs scored.

The pool finished as follows:

1st Malmesbury

2nd Merton Park

3rd Stanford

4th Holy Trinity

Pool D

Pool D consisted of Bishop Gilpin, Hillcross, Abbotsbury and Lonesome. Bishop Gilpin and Hillcross played out a tremendous opening match with both fielding teams restricting the batters to a few runs. In the end Bishop Gilpin came out on top by a single run. Abbotsbury and Lonesome had a very close match where wickets tumbled. A strong batting display from both sides meant each team scored over 250 but it was Lonesome who emerged victorious. Abbotsbury fought hard in each match and produced moments of quality in their games which gave them confidence going into the afternoon’s matches.

1st Bishop Gilpin

2nd Hillcross

3rd Lonesome

4th Abbotsbury

The afternoon saw the winner of each pool compete for places 1st-4th; second in each pool compete for 5th-8th; third in each pool compete for 9th-12th and fourth in each pool compete for 13th-16th. As each game was played you could see the standard of cricket rising. Bigger sixes were being struck; stunning catches were being taken and accurate bowling saw wickets tumble. Games were thrilling for the spectators, none more so than the final between Malmesbury and Dundonald. Malmesbury batted first and were quickly reduced to a score in the 190s as they lost two wickets in the first over. Some nice boundaries then put them back on track but every time it looked like Malmesbury were going to get ahead, Dundonald pinned them back by taking a wicket. In contrast Dundonald had a solid start scoring consistently. However a loss of a couple of wickets meant they had to increase their run rate if they were to reach their target. They came back strongly in the last two overs to secure victory and the trophy.

Well done to Dundonald for winning the event and they will now go on to represent Merton at the London Youth Games competition. Also well done to Malmesbury for finishing runners up and they will now go on to represent Merton at the Surrey Cricket Finals.

1st Dundonald

2nd Malmesbury

3rd Bishop Gilpin

4th Hatfeild

5th Hillcross

6th Pelham

7th St Matthew’s

8th Merton Park

9th Links

10th Stanford

11th The Sherwood

12th Lonesome

13th St Teresa’s

14th Abbotsbury

15th Singlegate

16th Holy Trinity

It was fantastic to hold the competition at Old Ruts CC – a great venue! We were fortunate to have 12 superb Rutlish leaders who officiated all matches confidently and knowledgably. Finally, it was wonderful to see all players and managers play/watch the game with the right attitude – always shaking hands after matches, supporting one another and enjoying what they were doing. Our REFSPECT winners today were Holy Trinity for the team award. They were positive throughout, applauding the opposing team, shaking hands and congratulating the opposition even when they lost. A great demonstration of fair play, sportsmanship and etiquette combined with fantastic team work and effort meant they were a credit to their school. Well done to everyone involved.

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